Original ‘Diablo’ developer calls out Blizzard for disrespecting its employees

Blizzard has been under fire from fans since announcing Diablo: Immortal, a mobile game which many feel will not live up to the pedigree of previous games in the franchise. The choice to pursue the casual mobile market rather than focus on hardcore PC gamers has been seen as alienating the core audience of the Diablo games. Now a Twitch rant from an original creator of Diablo has gained attention for its vehement criticism of the mega publisher.

David Brevik worked as a senior developer on the original Diablo game which was released in 1996, and he left Blizzard in 2003. His wife is a regular Twitch streamer who goes by thejunglequeen and Brevik appeared as a guest on her Path of Exile stream to talk about the current state of the company.

Brevik said that Blizzard was more interested in caring for its shareholders and the “elite one percent of the company” than looking after its workers. He was particularly angered by Blizzard’s changes to employee bonus program: “Why have you wronged us? Okay, we’re going to get rid of the [employee] profit-sharing program. We don’t like this. We don’t like the fact that low-level employees make decent money at Blizzard. We’re gonna get rid of this program because we need more profits to increase our stock price and improve our shareholders and the elite one percent of the company.”

However, the rant may be somewhat misplaced. Although there have been changes to employee compensation at Blizzard, the employee profit-sharing program that Brevik mentions specifically is still in place, according to Blizzard’s response to Newsweek. Brevik says he was speculating about possible scenarios at Blizzard but does not have any concrete information about the situation.

The rant seems to have gained a wide audience, with nearly half a million views on Twitch, because of the anger of Diablo fans. Many were expecting Diablo 4 to be announced at Blizzcon this year and were greatly disappointed when a mobile game was announced instead. The announcement was met with boos from the crowd and one fan asked if the announcement was an “out-of-season April Fool’s joke.”

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